ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Distant Drums of Wounded Knee Part Four

Updated on September 28, 2018
juneaukid profile image

Richard F. Fleck has published 2 novels (Clearing of the Mist, and Spirit Mound) and has written a number of short stories set in the West

Wounded Knee Cemetary

Distant Drums of Wounded Knee Part Four

Sam tried to remember the words to Buffy St. Marie's song, "Where have all the buffalo gone?" and was about to sing the first verse when some distant bright fire flared up. He dowsed the campfire and ran to the top of the ravine but could see nothing but sky, clouds, pines and prairie.

"Tonight let's try to get within sight of the white Catholic church building at Wounded Knee, and then make a runfor it the following night."

"Aye, sounds fine to me."

Kitty left her pack with Sam and walked a bit along the edge of the ravine to scout around. The terrain reminded her of County Armagh,but her homeland never quite got this cold except maybe way back in the days of the famine. Many a time had Armagh, Newry and Crossmaglen been raided by her kinsmen in the IRA, so the rat-ta-tat-tat of high velocity rifle fire in the distance was hardly strange to her. Her kinsmen believed that the Scots-Irish Protestant transplants dating back to Oliver Cromwell were really "colons" as Algerians call the French in North Africa. It was their job to reunify Ireland as it was before Cromwell--if the "colons" wished to stay under the Irish flag in the North, fine and dandy, but if not, well...

She thought to herself that white Americans, from the Indian viewpoint, anyway, were "colons." If they did not wish to acknowledge the forceful psychic presence of the Shoshone, Lakota, Apache, Kiowa, Pawnee, Nez Perce, Omaha, Fox, Delaware, Cherokee, Seminole, Arapaho, Cheyenne, Pueblo, Navajo, Chickasaw, Paiute, Hopi, Mic-Mac, Cree, or Blackfeet, then were they not simply twentieth-cenjtury European "colons'? The American Indian Movement surely picked the right place to seize--Wou8nded Knee 73, the site of a savage massacre of hundreds of Indian men, women and children in 1890. Kitty could hardly wait to see that new flag of the four directions flying over Indian-held land in the very heart of America.

Sam caught up with her to say he had roasted some Italian sausage for lunch and that, along with green peppers and onions on soda bread, would make a pretty fair sandwich as Vespucci used to say. Now he saw that her hair was auburn and it glowed in the sunlight. She was a fiery one alright.

"By the time we finish lunch, we'll have only about four hours to wait until dark--that'd be a good time to catch forty winks as we'll need the energy for tonights journey."

"Aye. Will they have that flag lit up at nighttime, do ya s'pose?"

'What flag?"

"Their flag--the four colors of the universe.""Oh aye," he caught himself, "yes, I'm sure it's flying twenty-four hours a day."

They ate their Italian sandwiches--her first ever--and crawled into their sleeping bags to try to snooze the afternoon away. She was soon off into the depths of another world, but he kept thinking of Francis Parkman State College and why he was here in South Dakota as a plume of smoke rose from their dying campfire.

Sam remember the author Francis Parkman again in anger and disgust. He couldn't forget the words, because he had underscored them several times, "It is obvious that the Indian mind has never seriously occupied itself with any of the higher themes of thought."

"What a son of a bitch," Sam mumbled out loud.

The white man's higher themes of thought must have led to the Cuyahoga River being made flammable and Lake Eire dead, and Yucca Flats poisoned with radiation. What bullshit this Francis Parkman had talked. And those smug bastards on the faculty laughing at me because I was a "Shoeshine" Indian. Thank God for Wounded Knee '73. It was difficult to get to sleep, but he remembered a prayer in his native language which reconnected him with the pines along the ravine and hawks sailing through the air, and the distant drums of Wounded Knee that pounded during February, March and April, 1973 until the Feds forced them to surrender.

Darkness had come and he and Kitty trudged several more hours in cold ravines toward Wounded Knee. At last they saw the flag of the four directions in the distance and unloaded their hundred pounds of food for a rest. They could hear shouts of joy and laughter around a distant campfire lighting up the Catholic church and the new flag of four-square miles of Wounded Knee. Kitty thought she must be re-living the Easter Uprising of the Irish rebels in 1916. Their ravine remained utterly silent and peaceful except for a raven chasing two sparrows in the sky.

Kitty suddenly let out a piercing scream. She kept shouting, "Stop, Let go of me!"

Sam jumped up and started running toward Kitty and the intruder, but he was grabbed around his throat and knocked to the ground by another man. Both he and Kitty were called trash as the Feds handcuffed them and seized their backpacks full of supplies for their brothers just a few hundred yards away. They were carted off in a truck to Rapid City and booked, but when they discovered that Kitty was an alien, they ordered her deportation, while Sam eventually received a six-month jail sentence for aiding and abetting the "enemy." She had a chance to kiss Sam goodbye and slip him her address in Ireland should he ever want to cross the pond someday. All the way back to Ireland, she prayed for Americans to grant greater recognition to tribal peoples and to return, at least a piece, of the sacred Black Hills to the Lakota Nation.

This is a modified part of Chapter XI of my first novel, Clearing of the Mist (Dustbooks, 1979 and reprinted by Domhan Books in 2000).

There are numerous books about Wounded Knee '73 and the American Indian Movement including Kenneth Stern's book, Loud Hawk: The U.S. Versus the American Indian Movement (2002).


Would you like to visit Wounded Knee, South Dakota?

See results

Wounded Knee

© 2010 Richard Francis Fleck


    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • juneaukid profile imageAUTHOR

      Richard Francis Fleck 

      8 years ago from Denver, Colorado

      Thanks Dohn121 and Hello, hello. I appreciate your comments. I may create a Part Five that is not in the novel dealing with his Rapid City experience and a tripm across the Atlantic.

    • Michael Shane profile image

      Michael Shane 

      8 years ago from Gadsden, Alabama

      Your words speak truth!

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 

      8 years ago from London, UK

      If this is the last one or not, I definitely have to buy your book from Ebay. Your are a wonderful writer and your story is so captivating. Thank you for a joyful read.

    • dohn121 profile image


      8 years ago from Hudson Valley, New York

      Is this the end? If so, I'm sad that it is, as I really wanted to read more. I guess I'll have to check it out myself then. Thank you so much for sharing this, juneakid. You certainly got my attention.

    • thevoice profile image


      8 years ago from carthage ill

      great hub book will check it out thanks


    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

    Show Details
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)